Posts filed under ‘Recycling’

Federal agency partners with plastic-zapping microwave company from Montreal

Pyrowave’s patented product breaks down plastic items, like Styrofoam cups or food containers, back into their original compounds. They can then be sold back to companies that want to re-make those same plastic products, or other plastic products made of the same ingredients. It saves companies from having to source new ingredients for plastic from crude oil, and in the process, reduces landfill waste, waste hauling and waste incineration.

Read Federal agency partners with plastic-zapping microwave company from Montreal by Elizabeth McSheffrey at the National Observer.

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July 11, 2018 at 10:30 am Leave a comment

Provincial Party Responses 2018

Make your vote count: find out where the parties stand. The next Government of Ontario will inherit a province facing many significant environmental challenges, from climate change and ongoing loss of biodiversity to a steady build up of toxics and pollutants in our air, water and land.  Strong actions will be required to address these problems and to position Ontario to benefit in a world rapidly moving toward a low-carbon future and embracing the need for more sustainable economic and social systems. We asked all parties to describe their vision for making Ontario an environmental leader and how they will enhance the quality of life of all of its residents.

We have invited all four parties to submit any additional policies or information as the election progresses, and we will note when new information has been added.

Read Party Responses 2018 at Green Prosperity.

June 4, 2018 at 10:37 am Leave a comment

Many Canadians are recycling wrong, and it’s costing us millions

 

Canadians are throwing too much garbage into their blue bins, sometimes out of laziness or ignorance, but sometimes with the best of intentions. And it’s costing recycling programs millions of dollars a year.

Even a few spoonfuls of peanut butter left in a jar can contaminate a tonne of paper and make it unmarketable — destined for the dump. Same for that glob of yogurt left in the bottom of the container.

Contamination has recently become a much bigger issue because China, the world’s biggest importer of recyclable material, started banning imports of paper with more than 0.5 per cent contamination — a standard that North American cities are struggling to meet.

Read Many Canadians are recycling wrong, and it’s costing us millions by Emily Chung at CBC News.

April 23, 2018 at 10:29 am Leave a comment

China Is Officially Enacting a Plastic Waste Import Ban

Starting in January, China’s government is enacting a plastic waste import ban, in an attempt to cut down on millions of tons of plastic and other recyclables they receive every year. This change may drastically affect how the world recycles and disposes of waste.

But while government officials worldwide consider how to move forward after China’s plastic waste import ban, the main focus has to be on the environment. This ban may undo the decades-long effort to build a plastics recycling industry, and lead to even more plastics being produced; IndustryWeek reports that China has already begun investing in brand new plastic to replace what they’re no longer recycling, to the delight of US chemical companies.

That’s especially bad news as plastic waste continues to harm the environment, particularly marine animals. The U.N. has called our plastics problem a “planetary crisis,” and action needs to be taken soon. Unless another country steps in to fill the recycling gap China has created, this issue will only get worse.

Read China Is Officially Enacting a Plastic Waste Import Ban by Claudia Geib and Chelsea Gohd at Futurism.

January 3, 2018 at 12:33 pm Leave a comment

Waste Reduction Group Launch

Filmed by YourTV Cornwall. Attendees had the opportunity to learn more about the 7 R’s of waste reduction at the launch of Transition Cornwall +’s newest action group.

November 27, 2017 at 11:02 am Leave a comment

Swap Before You Shop

Much of the advice out there for reducing your fashion footprint involves buying more sustainably made (and often expensive) clothes. But there are a number of ways – many of which we explore in our new Fashion issue – you can lower your impact that save money, both in the short- and long-term.

One way is to hold a clothing swap, which is exactly what it sounds like: a group of people get together and trade clothes with one another. Swapping is an extra-familial version of hand-me-downs, and something friends – particularly those who can’t afford to buy new clothes all the time – have been doing intuitively for years. But more formally organized swaps of all sizes – including city-wide events – have been gaining recent popularity. My tips here are for smaller-scale events.

Read Swap Before You Shop by Lauren MacDonald at the Alternatives Journal.

September 12, 2016 at 10:09 am Leave a comment

A Guide to Recycling Plastics

by Amy Korst, Mother Earth News, May 2014

plastic-recycling jpg

In the recycling world, starting a discussion about plastics is like waltzing through a minefield. The issues surrounding this material are laden with emotion, misunderstandings, and sensationalism. At some point in your zero-waste journey, you will encounter some of these issues.

Is Plastic Truly Recyclable?

The truest definition of recycling involves taking a material, melting it down, and turning it back into itself over and over. This can be done with glass and metal, which can both be remelted and remolded into jars or cans forever. This is a closed-loop system, and it’s very desirable in the world of recycling. On the other hand, some materials slowly degrade over time, meaning they can be reformed maybe once or twice, but after awhile the chemical composition of the original substance has changed and it can no longer be turned back into what it once was. This is called downcycling.

Plastic is similar to paper in that it downcycles, though it has a much shorter life in the recycling stream—sometimes it’s not even recycled once before it is turned into a less-valuable material. Plastic water or soda bottles, for example, are rarely turned back into bottles. Instead, the plastic is used for something secondary like fleece fabric or plastic lumber. This means that virgin plastic (made from fossil fuels) is still needed for the manufacture of new plastic bottles.

The downcycling of plastic is just one of the serious issues surrounding this material. The other is the fact that plastic never, ever biodegrades. More HERE>>

 

June 16, 2014 at 10:14 am 1 comment

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